Company info:
The Grand Ridge Brewing Co.
Mirboo North, V.I.C


Bottle size sampled: 330 mL

Standard drinks: 2.3

Cap type: Non-twist

Cost: I picked this up for $8.00 AU

Label info: ‘Moonshine is an extra strong pure malt beer in the style of scotch ale or barley wine, vintaged over an extended period of time. A true connoisseurs beer, best sipped after dinner not too cold.
Beer with attitude: No added chemicals, sugars or preservatives. Grand Ridge has won over 100 International medals and the Australian title for best Lager, Ale, Wheat, Dark, Stout, and Light categories of beer at the National Festival of Beers. Enjoy this one today’.

What the label really means: It cannot be claimed that Grand Ridge brewery don’t provide enough information on their labels. Excellent stuff.

The Hell-Cat review starts here

Label: I don’t know….I’ve said in the past that Grand Ridge’s labels are a bit too busy and I stick by that. It looks crowded and complicated. I stick by my suggestion that they should make more of a deal of the vicious, ball tearing, gut splicing lyre bird that adorns the label. Bring that sucker to the forefront and lose the repetition, the redundant wordiness, and most of all the gold. They have the makings of what could be a really good label and it continues to fall short.

I give it a label rating of 6 out of 10.

AROMA:  A slightly scotchy smell, with a whole whack of malt and a slight suggestion of coffee. It also smells distinctly strong in alcohol.

Taste: GLASS – A bitter, sharp, initial hit that has a non-overwhelming, all-mouth scotch infused flavour burst. It’s almost caramelly in presentation with a certain mouthy thickness to it. My first thought when

sampling this was to compare it to Brew Dog’s Paradox Smokehead and my conclusion is that it’s not as punchy. But this is certainly one brew to be sampled – a fine drop indeed.

I give it a beer from glass rating of 7.5 out of 10.

Taste: BOTTLE – Drink this honky tonk Moonshine from the bottle and you’ll find that it’s denser, fuller, and a bit less complex in flavour. It’s still very enjoyable but it lacks that delicious scotch aroma that I really feel propels this beer along.

I give it a taste from bottle rating of 7 out of 10.

Song of choice: Try this alongside Laurel Aitken’s ‘Rudi Got Married

Accompanying food: This would make an almighty blue-cheese and crackers brew.

Best season to appreciate: Definitely an apres-ski, cooler weather brew.

All-nighter beer? For me it’s a little too dense for an all-nighter but it could work for some.


  1. BargeDave says:

    Scotch ales just aren’t my thing but I can understand their appeal to some palates. A mate of mine once inadvertently brewed a beer that tastes a lot like this by simply adding far too much household sugar to a brew in the hope of giving it kick-arse alcohol content. I pronounced it a failure, and was back apologising the next week when I tried a Moonshine and realised my mate had synthesized a very pricey brew.


    • Radio Snivins says:

      I love a homebrew mishap story with a happy ending.
      Once upon a time – earlier this year, to be precise – Snivins had a crackasaurus at growing orange mead. He used a Lalvin champagne yeast, and the result was a fifteen percenter that tasted sweet ‘n’ orangey like Cointreau. The end.


      • Radio Snivins says:

        Oops. That should say pineapple mead. I used fresh pineapple, and tinned pineapple, and pineapple juice, yet it ended up tasting like oranges.


      • BargeDave says:

        Sniv, my same mate who synthesised Moonshine brewed an amazing apricot sparkling wine using the apricots off an otherwise neglected tree, a pack of white sugar and some beer yeast from a cheap home brew kit. It was amazing. It tasted like a cross between good Brut champagne and good dried apricots. When it comes to mixing fruit, sugar and yeast, it seems that anything is worth a try – you may just come up with some pure brilliance. If pineapple and/or oranges don’t do the job, try rhubarb!


  2. Radio Snivins says:

    Gee, I thought there would’ve been more love for Moonshine, I really did, or at least some love. It’s a terrific guzz, but it is expensive – 1 @ $7; 6 @ $37; 24 @ $125. A less walletwhopping alternative is to drizzle brandy essence into your whiff du jour, and then plonk a wedge of dark chocolate in the spout.


  3. Radio Snivins says:

    Excellent choice of test guzzle, ‘Kazoo, and an excellent review. I agree with everything you said. Moon is a dangnably interesting beer, or ale, if you wanna get all egghead about it – I’m lookin’ at you, Bargé. I’ve never tasted a beer like it before. In fact, it’s so interesting, I have no hez in awarding it ten out of ten. Also, it packs a whallop…hic


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